The Third Rail: What Washes Down The Watchmen?


By now we’ve all been assaulted by a publicity blitz as overwhelming as a giant squid attack for The Watchmen. The movie’s success gives some hope for Alan Moore fans that more of his comics might head to Hollywood — well, maybe not his “X-rated masterpiece”. It’ll also likely serve as a boon for academics who want to examine moral relativism in superhero films. Oh wait… that’s already happened.

What’s been sorely missing from the Watchmen promotions are loosely connected cocktails. How can a movie starring a character named Dr. Manhattan not also endorse a Manhattan cocktail variation? Thankfully, a few ardent fans have taken care of that. After the jump, let’s examine some superhero concoctions.

One smart drink-mixer and fan of the comicbook has tried his hand at creating a Dr. Manhattan Cocktail. Inspired by the doctor’s bluish glow (and thankfully not by his exposed wang) and quickly discovering that the classic whiskey base of a Manhattan doesn’t take too kindly to color changes, he settled on 2 oz clove-infused gin, 1 oz dry vermouth, 1/2 oz St Germain, a splash of blue curacao, 2 dashes Peychaud’s bitters, all stirred with ice and served straight up. A piquant cocktail but probably not too easy to order at your local (the clove-infused gin poses a problem). You would have more luck if you left in the wang and asked for the Full-Frontal Manhattan created by James of Isotope Comics. This stiff drink (insert rimshot here) consists of 2 oz Bombay Sapphire Gin, 1 oz Hiram Walker Blue Curacao, 1/2 oz Luxardo Maraschino Liqueur, and 3 dashes Regan’s Orange Bitters, shaken and strained.

James also invented some more pretty convincing drinks for other characters from The Watchmen (with only one recipe calling for a drop of blood), and USA Today’s Pop Candy blog invites readers to offer suggestions for more. Clearly, cocktail nerds and comic book nerds are often one and the same. But if that’s the case, then why does Superman have so many bad cocktails named after him? Thanks to the primary-color outfit, bartenders tend to think that they need to include red, blue, and yellow elements to fit the bill. But if I learned anything in kindergarten, it was that mixing all three primary colors together doesn’t give you a fourth, better color. It gives you a muddy mess that you won’t want to take as a shot (but if you do, watch this video and shake equal parts Irish Cream, Blue Curacao, and Amaretto. Ugh.)

The best option is to forego the cape and tights and opt for something classier. Boston’s Drink cocktail bar came up with the icy Fortress of Solitude: gin, crème de menthe, crème de cacao on the rocks. A few of these should have about the same effect on you as Kryptonite would on the Man of Steel (or you can click here to find out how to make the suitably vile Kryptonite Cocktail).

P.S.: I’d take on Batman cocktails too, but unfortunately I’m just an amateur.